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A military installation located on the coast of Northwest Florida, Hurlburt Field is home to Headquarters Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC), the 1st Special Operations Wing (1 SOW), and the USAF Special Operations School.
AFSOC is responsible for deploying and supporting the Air Force’s Special Operations Forces around the world. AFSOC also trains Special Operations personnel and conducts other related functions. The next article is Ferry Park Fort Walton Beach FL
Located in Okaloosa County, Florida, Hurlburt Field is on the Eglin Air Force Base reservation. The base is home to the 1st Special Operations Wing, which focuses on preparing Air Force special operations forces for worldwide missions.
The 1st SOW is comprised of more than 26 squadrons, all capable of fighting a war anywhere in the world on a moment’s notice. The wing’s mission is to plan, posture, and execute the precision strikes, specialized mobility and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance missions in support of joint and coalition special operations forces.
Hurlburt Field Visitor Center is a great place to get in touch with base officials and learn more about what’s going on at your new duty station. It’s open Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., no appointments are necessary.
When you arrive at Hurlburt Field Visitor Center, a member of the 1st SOW’s Commando Welcome Center is available to help you with your arrival process and answer any questions you may have about the area, your gaining unit, and the base. They will also assist you with accessing the newcomers’ guide, newcomers app, and base map.
In addition to helping you get settled in, the Commando Welcome Center also assists newcomers with gaining, as well as their families and loved ones. This personalized right start program connects airmen and their families with local businesses, military services, and community organizations that can provide resources to make your transition to the Hurlburt Field area a positive one.
While most people who are stationed at Hurlburt Field choose to live on the base, there are a number of cities nearby that offer a variety of housing options for all budgets and lifestyles. These include Fort Walton Beach, Okaloosa Island, and Wright.
With a wealth of recreational activities to choose from, there’s something for everyone in this region of the Florida Panhandle. Whether you want to spend your days swimming in the water, digging your toes into the sand, or enjoying historic sites, museums, and other cultural attractions, there’s no shortage of fun for you and your family in this area of the country. Check it out here
The Commando Welcome Center at the Hurlburt Field Visitor Center is a one-stop shop for a variety of programs and services to assist new Airmen and their families with moving on base. The site is also a one-stop shop for new Airmen and their families to check out the various displays and interactive exhibits, learn about the many facets of base life, and find all the information they need to make an informed decision when choosing where they want to live, work, play and retire.
The CWC is located in the middle of the main building and is home to many of the larger-than-life displays, exhibits, and programs on the base. For example, the IMAX theater is a must-see for Airmen and their families. The Center is also a good place to catch the latest military news and events, learn about upcoming training opportunities, and more.
The CWC has many names for its responsibilities and activities, but the most important is its role as an introduction to Hurlburt Field. In addition to the aforementioned gizmo, the Center has also partnered with the local community and military organizations on campus and around town to help ensure Airmen are well prepared to begin their new adventures at the base. The best part is that all CWC activities are free and open to the public.
The Resiliency Center is a one-stop resource to support service members and their families on a variety of topics. It’s designed to help people build the resilience necessary to adapt to stressors, cope with the challenges of military life and make positive changes to their lives.
The center also helps people who are recovering from trauma by providing services and resources. These include mental health counseling and other services aimed at promoting the well-being of service members and their families.
It’s also a great resource for new service members who need assistance adjusting to their new duty station and the surrounding community. It has several services and amenities available to them, including the Commando Welcome Center and Visitor Control Center.
Another highlight of the workshop was learning how Hurlburt Field consolidated support functions at its welcome center to minimize stress for its newly arriving military members and improve the base onboarding process. This was accomplished by integrating all of the base’s onboarding support functions under a single resiliency program, referred to as Commando Ready.
As part of the program, the center has a dedicated resiliency specialist to help members and their families navigate the stress of military life. This includes coping skills, reintegration, and deployment preparation.
In addition to resiliency programs, the Resiliency Center also hosts several events to promote healthy lifestyles. These include suicide prevention training known as safeTALK, a program that trains service members to identify and respond to suicidal thoughts and feelings.
There’s also a military family life counselor on base who is available for outreach opportunities and to provide one-on-one counseling services to service members and their families. The center offers a variety of resources, including presentations on deployment stress, reintegration, couples communication, and coping skills.
The Resiliency Center works in close conjunction with the Behavioral Health Services Flight to provide active duty personnel and their families with services such as mental health care, psychological resiliency, and family advocacy programs. This is done through various means, including a mental health clinic, a psychological resiliency element, and a family advocacy strength-based therapy (FAST) program.
The Visitor Control Center is the base’s central point of contact for all visitors, both military and non-military. Here you’ll find information on local attractions, events, and services available to the community, as well as information about the area, including transportation options.
Located in Okaloosa County, Hurlburt Field is the home of Air Force Special Operations Command’s 1st Special Operations Wing and other associated units. Its mission is to organize, train and equip Air Force special operations forces for global employment and to assist foreign countries in the establishment of internal air defense abilities.
It also hosts the Air Force Special Operations Air Warfare Center, which provides specialized training for combat rescue officers and combative instructors. AFSOC also employs the base’s 270 security forces members, who provide physical security, entry control, armed response and, police services to Hurlburt Field as well as other Air Force bases worldwide.
They deploy to support AFSOC missions across the globe, protecting AFSOC resources and troops, and performing a variety of law enforcement duties throughout the installation and in Offutt Military Family Housing. The unit includes three installation entry points, a Visitor Control Center, law enforcement patrols, flight line security, an investigative branch, Combat Arms Training, and the wing antiterrorism office.
In addition to supporting the 1st SOW, Hurlburt Field also hosts Air Force Special Operations Command’s John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School, as well as several other Air Force major commands.
For more than a century, the area around Hurlburt Field has been a hotbed of conflict and training. The site has served as a staging ground for US aircraft during World War II, a strategic air base for the Air Force during Korea, and a training site for the Air Force’s first airborne squadron in 1951.
Currently, the 1st SOW boasts a 29-squadron wing capable of deploying and sustaining a fight anywhere in the world at a moment’s notice. The wing focuses on unconventional warfare including counterinsurgency and psychological operations during low-intensity conflicts.
When you’re not training with the Air Commandos at Hurlburt Field, there are plenty of other things to do in this part of Florida. You’ll find white-sand beaches, historic sites, museums, art galleries, theaters, great restaurants and breweries, vibrant shopping districts and more. And when you’re ready to go home, the base is just a short drive from Fort Walton Beach and other coastal cities like Pensacola, Ocala, and Destin.